Entering the Lottery

The Chicago Marathon Lottery

The Chicago Marathon, held in October, is one of the most popular marathons in the United States. The course is flat and there is plenty of good scenery. I am looking forward to Lake Michigan views, skyscrapers, many cheering fans and several elite athletes that will complete their race in less than half the time that I hope to achieve.

Registration opened February 19 at noon. However B and I were traveling and I didn’t try to register on my iphone. Rumors were that the race would sell out in days, but I figured I would have time later that evening to sign up. For anyone who was attempting to register for the Chicago Marathon I’m sure you know there were several glitches with the registration process and now we are offered a Lottery Format for the remaining 15,000 entries.

I entered the Lottery this week, and will be notified on March 12 if I have received one of the coveted entries. Of course I was a little on the fence about doing a Marathon this year. I didn’t run much last year, just one 1/2 Marathon in February. My right knee has been bothering me (too much darn stairmaster in college!), and I imagine with age it will only get worse. But completing a marathon has been on my *bucket list* since I started running in my early 20s. I am so nervous because if I get in via the Lottery, this year will be full of training and no excuses. If I don’t get in, I fear I will never be able to do the Chicago marathon, because they will probably start to have qualifying times. I will never have a qualifying time because I really only want to do one marathon, I think my body handles 1/2 marathons pretty well, they are a challenge and something I want to do at least once a year.

My nerves are up and I have to wait a few more days to see what happens. One a side note, I do have a friend who works for a non-profit and if I don’t get to register via the Lottery, she may be able to get me an entry through her organization. However I’m sure I’ll have to commit to raising money for her charity, though that would be a good incentive and make the one marathon that I run in my life even more memorable and worthwhile. Here’s to marking off an accomplishment on my bucket list that has been there for about 10 years 🙂

Fitness February – Admitting Defeat

This month was lots of traveling, then cold cozy weather when we were home. So that all added up to not meeting my fitness goals. I’m not going to dwell on it. I’m just going to pick myself up and move on.

I am hoping that I can get back on track with my running next month. This month I need to adjust my goal from 50 miles to 25, right now I stand at 12.5 miles, so if I can hit 25 that will be a win in my book.

As for eating, my snacking has been completely out of control. I am going to focus on just eating my meals and maybe one snack a day. I have gotten in the bad habit of snacking after dinner and that needs to change or I know I won’t be seeing any positive results.

Expense tracking was also a bust for February. I need to get back on track in March. I did pretty good in January, so I know it is possible. Maybe if I can break it down to weekly spending, then do more frequent updates, I will feel more accountable.

On a positive note, I haven’t really spent much money frivilously. I had the plan that I wanted a new wallet (which my mom bought for me at the Cole Haan outlet in St. Augustine, Florida) and I needed a new pair of comfy black ballet flats (I purchased at the Easy Spirit outlet-sheesh, I’m getting old, but I promise they are quite cute). The shoes are leather and have a fashionable quilted pattern and I really like them. I’ve been wearing boots lately, but once this snow melts I think they’ll be great for everyday with black pants. Black pants are pretty much my work staple. I own quite a few dresses, which I am trying to get in the habit of wearing a skirt or dress to work at least twice a week, just to mix it up.

Hope everyone has a happy Friday! I am ready to be done with this week and get some work done at home this weekend. After a week of vacation and a long weekend out of town there is plenty of laundry to keep my busy.

February Fitness Update

Palm Coast

Palm Coast

This was our view for the last week! I could get used to that!

On the spending tracking during vacation, I did pretty terrible. We didn’t really overspend, but I didn’t keep track, so I’ll have to go back and kind of estimate just so February and the rest of the year isn’t thrown off too much. On the eating front, it was a big bust too. Too many cocktails, too many snacks and not enough exercise. We did make it to the gym once, but I ended my run about half way through when a sweet older lady was quite perplexed as she tried both the elliptical and the bike but kept looking longingly at my treadmill. She practically glowed when I got off and told her that I was *done* with my workout 🙂 My good deed for the day.

As for the February workout goals. Here’s an update, half way through the month.

1. Track Calories (During vacation, I took a vacation from tracking, once back I am keeping track and doing well-at least I lost the weight I gained on vacation, only 2# but still it’s tough for me to lose weight)

2. Run 50 miles (hmm, going to have to really step this up! so far have only run 12.2 – YIKES – 37.8 to go!)

3. Push-ups (doing well keeping up with the app, even on vacation)

4. Lower weight to 145-147 (see 1. not good! I am bringing it back down, actually I’d be happy if I can just see anything in the 140s)

There you have it, my February update.

On a side note, I was watching Jillian Michaels on a Bravo Talk Show, and she said she didn’t like Hot Yoga. She said it’s not good to exercise in such extreme heat, it’s better to warm your body from the inside. That kind of makes me feel better for letting those last few classes expire. I’m back to running, weight training, Zumba, Ballet Core and any fun classes that show up. I want to try WERQ, which I guess is like Zumba, but with more popular songs.

Off to Florida!

Looking forward to some sunshine and a week without work. Lazy days, long runs, reading on the beach, kayaking and cocktails. Doesn’t that sound marvelous. It does to me.

I’m not great about keeping track of spending while on vacation (or really anytime for that matter) so this will be a challenge. We’ve done reasonably well during January, I’d like to keep this momentum up. I will do a January review when we return.

My husband and I will be with both sets of parents in Florida, this should be interesting. Everyone gets along, but we’ve never traveled ‘together.’ Although technically not all together, we will be in a condo with my in-laws and my parents will be in their RV (my dream- to roam free).

Hope everyone has a great week. I’m hoping to get some exercise in, I know I’ll be indulging in some delicious food, so I am just trying to keep my portions small to counter balance my treats. I’ve got vacation brain already, is it 5 o’clock yet?

Fitness February

Kauai

Kauai

This picture was taken after a kayak and hike in Kauai, since B had done this kayak/hike with a tour on a prior trip, we decided we didn’t need to go with a group. We rented a double kayak and got an early start before the tourists arrived. It was the most peaceful spot. I was in pretty great shape on our honeymoon, so this picture is motivation for me, even if you can’t really see me clearly, I remember how good and fit I felt. I want to get that feeling back.

I am linking up for a February Fitness Challenge with Hawaii Plan I also thought since it is Hawaii Plan’s goal to retire in Hawaii, it would be appropriate to put a picture of Hawaii, cute right 🙂 B and I would like to retire in Hawaii, but since we would like to retire early, we will settle for trips there as often as possible. Can’t wait to get back there in early 2014!

We have pretty similar goals, here are mine.

1)Track calories all week, stay in range if not every day, for the week.
2)Run 50 miles
3)Daily PushUps, Keep up with 100 PushUps App
4)Get weight 145-147, no more 150s!

I’m not great at tracking calories, but I know this works, so I’m going to stick with it. I am also conscious of food components, like I know Fiber and Protein keep me full, so I must include them in every meal. It must sound like I start a new diet every week, but it’s really only every month or so. I get frustrated easily. Right now I am really enjoying The Miracle Carb Diet I’ve tried a few of the recipes, and of course they’re not as good as the full fatty fat versions, but they are a good substitute, spinach dip made with greek yogurt instead of sour cream and mayo, hello yummy goodness! Last night I even made an Asian Cod, that was really flaky and delicious, even B liked it! Tracking will be a challenge for the first week, but I’ll just do the best I can.

Since I ran/walked over 30 miles in January, I think 50 for February is very doable. Plus the first week we’ll be on vacation, so I plan to get some nice long run/walks accomplished.

I have tried to do the 100 Push Up challenge before and got a few weeks in, but didn’t finish. Now that they have a handy App for my iphone, I think it will be pretty easy to accomplish. That way, even on my non-workout days, I will be doing something.

As for goal weight, I’m not trying for anything crazy, if I can just lose 3# a month, I will be at my goal by summer. With the calorie tracking and increased running, I should be able to reach this goal. I am also considering rewarding myself for the weeks that I track my calories and stay within my calorie budget, not reward myself for weight loss, the weight loss is really a reward in itself. The calorie counting is the difficult part.

I am feeling very positive about 2013!

January Goal Update

See my January goals here

1. Finish up the 2013 Budget, that was easy and completed right away. However, as we’ve been tracking expenses, we are over in both Dining Out and Groceries. Need to be a little more careful in these categories.

2. Run/Walk 30 Miles, pretty easy once I set the goal and stayed accountable. I am already at about 35 miles, mostly running. Just a little walking here and there.

3. Read the Bible daily. This didn’t happen- I started strong, then completely fell off. I think I should just do a weekly goal for next month. Much easier to accomplish, as I want to set realistic and achievable goals.

4. Lose 5#, um no. This weight loss business is HARD! I have had 4 sessions with a trainer, and have started eating MUCH healthier this month. I am feeling better, but no significant weight loss. We did check my body fat on the analyzer machine, and I have gone down 2% which is pretty impressive. I am feeling good about that, so even though it’s not weight, I am losing fat, which technically is better, right?!? Not a complete fail. More of a body composition shift, which is something that makes me happy.

Working Out: The Trainer and The Trainee

NicZip

This is me on a short zip line at a local zoo a few years ago. I’m always acting like a kid.

This is an update on my workouts.

As the trainer: If you remember a few weeks back I offered to train a couple of friends one day a week for 12 weeks. So far we have met 5 times and of those A has missed 2. That is a little disappointing, but I’m just encouraging her to do her best. C has been so dedicated, I can definitely see changes in her mindset in just these few short weeks. She is working out on her own other times during the week, even working out with another friend. I am really hoping that A can get back that enthusiasm she had at the beginning of all this. I’m trying to not let this get me discouraged because I know she would be so happy with herself if she could just get past this hump.

As the trainee: My gym was offering a deal on personal training 5 sessions for a low price. I have had 2 sessions and they have both seriously been worth every penny! The trainer is really good at picking appropriate exercises and getting my heart pounding. The first day we did these bench hops and I was out of breath in a quick hurry. Hey, I’m a runner, I’m supposed to have good cardio?!? I guess I haven’t been pushing myself enough. Gotta mix it up! Then this week was arms and so many push ups and pull ups (on a low bar, not full pull ups, I’m not there….yet!) my arms were beet red! She said that was a good sign, I was thinking, What is wrong with me? It has been such a nice treat to just let someone else tell me what to do and the time passes so quickly. I think I may reward myself with another few session later in the year, if I can find the $ in the budget.

I’ve been running on my own, this month I set a low goal of 30 miles and I am more than 1/2 way there. Yay! Gotta love it!

I am eating on a new plan, The 4 Hour Body Diet Plan, it has to do with Slow Carbs with one cheat day/week. Today is Day 10, and I have lost 1.5 #, I am confident that I will reach my goal of 144.5 by the time we leave for Florida, 2-2-13. Or at least be much closer to my goal 🙂